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August 22, 2010 / Candice

A Few Reasons I don’t want Tim Pawlenty for 2012

(I wrote this SEVERAL months ago on another blog, I decided to re-post it here for you guys to read.)

His name’s been in the news for the better part of a year. We could thank McCain for that, he had Tim Pawlenty (or T. Paw as he’s known in Minnesota and that’s how I usually refer to him.) on a short list of Vice President candidates. Since August of 2008, most of Minnesota knew TPaw was going to be running for President in 2012. Well, conservatives and libertarians in the state don’t really like that choice. I don’t pretend to speak for everyone, but given his record in Minnesota over the past 8 years, it’s so hard to see how any freedom loving American could get behind this man.

Minnesota is a pretty interesting state, politically. We’re pretty purple, but we also have strong loyalties to our “family”. Take the 1984 election for example, Minnesota was the ONLY state to vote for Mondale. Why? Because he’s our hometown boy, that’s why. Oh, and apparently we like women vice presidents? That’s a bit of a stretch, but none the less, you get the picture. We like when someone from Minnesota is famous. Look at the amount of money we throw at Joe Mauer every single season, just to keep our boy in our state. (Not that I mind really, he’s a great baseball player, and he’s cute.) The hoopla that surrounds Prince to this very day is another shining example. We love our people, well only some of them. So that’s why TPaw is getting big support from many Minnesotans.

My loyalties aren’t so emotionally tied though. I’ve seen TPaw’s RINO ways and I haven’t been able to look past them. He started off good, really good. He promised during his 2001 campaign that he wouldn’t raise taxes. And he didn’t. Technically. As far as his first budget is concerned, he didn’t raise income taxes at all. But you see, TPaw has a way of calling taxes “fees”. Take the 75 cents per pack cigarette “”health impact fee”. Its a tax. It goes to the state to pay for state health care programs, it’s not a fee charged only to smokers who use the state entitlement.

Take the new Twins Stadium, Target Field, it cost roughly $522 million, of that the team’s owner put up $130 million and the state picked up the tab for the rest at a HUGE cost to residents of Hennipen county (Minneapolis) by issuing a 0.15% sales tax increase to just that county. It may not seem like a lot, but it adds up. (as you’ll see) The new Gophers Football stadium, the state paid for nearly half (48%) or $130 million of the $288 million price tag. It’s all part of the cost of doing business, right? While the state picked up the tab, the university received $84 million dollars in donations from corporations and private citizens, leaving their portion significantly lower than the state’s. It would have been nice to see how much money could have been raised without the state stepping in. But I digress…

TPaw’s stance on health care isn’t what any good conservative would call, “good.” See, when the democrats proposed a bill for universal health care, T Paw decided it was too big (good right?) but instead of dropping the issue, he increased the state health care program to cover all children. See, he was smart enough to know that if a HUGE bill is proposed first then anything smaller would seem like a major win for the governor. Unfortunately, many Minnesotans or Americans for that matter, never seem to notice. We tend to have a mentality of “Well at least it wasn’t option 1, right??” *eyeroll*

But don’t let T Paw fool you with his “limited government” rhetoric. He’s anything BUT a limited government kind of guy. Take this light rail mess. I know, I know, if you’re visiting Minneapolis you love it and think it’s the coolest thing since the Slinky, but for us that are a little wiser know it’s nothing but a damn money suck. “But it’s an investment.” No, investments offer a return on your money my dear. The light rail has yet to issue a profit. “But they’re still working on it, it could be years before a return is made.” Um…no. We won’t see a return on that money. Public Transportation doesn’t make money. It spends money.

Such as the three-quarter-billion-dollar Hiawatha Line. Touted for its ridership success, it not only has failed to put a dent in traffic congestion, but already is running annual deficits (expenses less fares) of $10 million as far as the eye can see. The state is now the largest funding source for Metro Transit, spending $200 million annually for 2.8 percent of Minnesota commuters. Jason Lewis, Star Tribune Oct 2007

But the craziness doesn’t end there. Ever listen to Pawlenty talk about energy? He likes to stick to the “drill baby drill” concept when he’s on FoxNews, because that’s what the right likes to hear. But if you live in the state of Minnesota, you know good ol’ T Paw has a lot of “green” flowing through his veins. In fact, I’m pretty sure his blood is green.

“Thank you everyone. You’re all busy and you’ve taken time to help us form a better environmental program for the state.

As Peter Drucker taught us, “The practices that got us here, won’t get us to the future. The best way to think about future is to go out and invent it.”

It looks like we should have listened to President Carter. He called us to action, and we should have listened. So we now have ourselves in a bit of a pickle. As is often the case, the people are way ahead of the politicians. We’re benefiting from their tailwind.

Other visionaries deserve credit too, many who may have been dismissed as goofy. They were right, not goofy.

Energy and climate issues are intertwined. Climate change is real. Human behavior is partly and may be a lot responsible. Those who don’t think so are simply not right. We should not spend time on voices that say it’s not real. Please don’t let these voices discourage or distract you from your mission.

Our hope is at the end of your deliberations, you will have given us a plan for action.

I’m proud of Minnesota’s longstanding attention to environmental issues, but here we need to raise the bar as others catch up. We want to be bold, dynamic. But we have to fashion steps. Our actions on climate can’t unravel the political consensus or the Minnesota economy. It must be done in a rational way.

Sometimes success has led to complacency. Sadly we have been complacent in thinking about energy and environment. But we’re reaching a tipping point, and we have to deal with it now. I’ll do my best to lead and advocate for your recommendations. Tim Pawlenty to Minnesota Climate Change Advisory Group, April 20th, 2007

Say it ain’t so T Paw? You some how managed to say Carter was a visionary, he was right, and Climate change is REAL in the same speech? *sigh* If that doesn’t say it all folks, I just don’t know what else to show you.

Oh, perhaps the fact that my energy bill has sky rocketed in recent years. Why? MANDATES. The state (and federal) government have been forcing companies like Xcel Energy to become more “green”. That has directly correlated into more money out of my pocket every year. But Pawlenty doesn’t seem to mind. It seems that he, like some dems, are big fans of creating a problem so they can get credit for the solution. Unfortunately, sometimes the solutions are worse than the problems.

The problem with T Paw isn’t that he’s a Republican with RINO tendencies, it’s that he’s never really had a foundation to stand on. He’s never been a limited government conservative. He’s a pretty good at being something to all people. That’s not what I want in the President of the United States. I want a man with conviction who is willing to stand up to his opponents. His use of the unallotment in Minnesota has been interesting, I’m starting to wonder if his motivation is to have, on record, more proof of his conservativeness and be able to show voters that in recent years he’s been tough against the Democratic-Farmer-Labor Party of Minnesota. But let’s be real…he’s not fooling me. His record is anything but solid. As far as being a freedom loving American with strong conservative values, T Paw is NOT that man. Sorry kids.

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